The Student Advocate is here to give you advice about your situation, explain what your options are, and also help you navigate the university system.

Independent Advocacy Advice

As an employee of the UCSA, which is independent from the University, the Student Advocate is able to assist and advise you in matters where you are in conflict with the University, or a member of its staff, which is something that UC staff are unable to do. The Student Advocate is able to assist you with a number of matters here at UC. 

The Student Advocate can assist with:

  • Appeals 
  • Complaints, Concerns, and Grievances 
  • Special Consideration Applications - for both Assessment and Late Discontinuation
  • Disciplinary Issues
  • Academic Progress and Exclusion
  • General advocacy enquiries. 

Please note that the Student Advocate is unable to assist you where you are primarily in conflict with another UC student.

The Student Advocate can:

  • Provide confidential independent advice and support
  • Assist you with drafting applications, letters, and other documents
  • Attend meetings with University staff and Appeal/Discipline hearings with you

If we cannot help with your situation, we can definitely put you in contact with someone who can.

How to get help:

1. Drop in

The UCSA Office is located in the Undercroft, Puaka-James Hight Building on the Ilam Campus of the University of Canterbury. The office hours are 9am - 4:00pm Monday - Friday. 

When you drop in, tell the receptionist that you would like advocacy support. You will be asked to fill in an intake form so we have your contact details. One of our Help Volunteers or the Student Advocate will come speak with you in a private room. 

2. Call or email 

Let us know what is going on for you. You can call 03 369 0452/0450 or email 

Handy to know:

We are not always available to accept drop-ins because of meetings or other work matters. If you would like to guarantee a meeting time you can always book an appointment in advance using the contact details stated above. 


This team of senior Law and Psychology students have volunteered to be the first port of call for students coming in to see us with an issue. UCSA Help volunteers have been trained in the art of client interviewing and will gather relevant facts to be delivered to the Student Advocate, who will be in contact to follow up from the initial interview. All information is confidential and remains within the Advocacy and Welfare Team.

If you would like to become a UCSA Help volunteer, please email for more information.



Student Advocate
Nathan Simkiss
03 369 0452

Advocacy and Welfare Manager
Ee-Li Hong
03 369 0450